Iranian President's crashed helicopter found - 'No sign of life'

An official stated that "unfortunately" it appears that all on board are dead

Screenshot 8 7 HELICOPTER, Iran, PRESIDENT

The helicopter in which Iranian President Ebrahim Raishi and Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian were on board when it crashed in a mountainous region of the country in dense fog on Sunday has now been located, emergency services announced, but "the situation is not good', the hopes of finding survivors seem slim.

"The president's helicopter has been located. A search and rescue team is approaching the crash site (…) the situation is not good," said the head of the Iranian Red Crescent Pirhossein Koulivant.

There is "no indication" of survivors at the crash site of the Bell 212 helicopter carrying Iran's President Ibrahim Raishi, Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian and other officials, the Islamic Republic's state television reported.

Drone footage of the wreckage taken by the Red Crescent and broadcast to state media. The FARS news agency showed the crash site on a steep, wooded hillside, with little left of the helicopter beyond a blue-and-white tail.

 

An official told Reuters news agency that "unfortunately" it appeared that all on board were dead, adding that the helicopter was completely charred.

No official announcement of their deaths has been made yet.

Earlier, a Turkish drone had detected a source of heat, estimating it to be the wreckage of the helicopter carrying Ebrahim Raisi" and "the coordinates were shared with the Iranian authorities", with Anadolu also uploading thermal camera video.

 

Who was on the helicopter?

Nine people were on board the helicopter that crashed in northwestern Iran on Sunday, including three officials, an imam and members of the flight and security team, Iran's Tasnim news agency reported.

The IRGC media outlet Sepah reported that the nine include: Iranian President Ebrahim Raishi, Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdolakhian. Governor of East Azerbaijan province Malek Rahmati, Tabriz Friday prayer imam Mohammad Ali Alehashem as well as a pilot, co-pilot, crew chief, security chief and another bodyguard.

Emergency government meeting in Tehran

Iran's government held an emergency meeting under First Vice President Mohammad Muhbar after the Bell 212 helicopter carrying President Ebrahim Raishi and Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian crashed earlier Sunday, state media reported.

The government has authorized further mobilization as part of the search and rescue operation, which is being complicated by adverse weather conditions. Some 65 groups are involved in them, including personnel from the Iranian armed forces.

Under current protocol, Mr. Muhbar, 69, will take over as president of the Islamic Republic in the event of Mr. Raisi's death.

Iranians are praying for their president

The citizens of Iran are praying for the fate of their president as Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei made it clear that the country's course would not be disrupted. There is no information about the fate of the helicopter's passengers, while earlier there were reports that communications were made with two of them, without anything more being known. According to CNN, however, the damage from the crash - "heavy forced landing" was the initial wording - is not extensive.

The helicopter carrying Iranian President Ebrahim Raishi and the foreign minister went missing while crossing a mountainous area in thick fog, an Iranian official said.

The chief of the general staff of the Iranian army ordered all forces of the army and the elite Revolutionary Guards to be used in search and rescue operations.

Video of rescuers' frantic efforts to find Raisi:

 

 

Video from the surveys where thick fog has covered everything:

 

Iranian state television reported that the "crash of Raisi's helicopter was due to adverse weather conditions".

Raisi had crossed the border into Azerbaijan to inaugurate the Kiz-Kalesi Dam, the largest joint water project between Iran and Azerbaijan, according to Iranian news network Press TV.

Meanwhile, Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei urged Iranians "not to worry" following reports of the helicopter crash, saying "the country's work will not be disrupted".

Users on X (formerly Twitter) posted a photo of the weather conditions before the helicopter of the president of Iran went missing and after it went missing. As you can see, the environment is completely different before and after.

Source: protothema.gr